Docs told to avoid 1 flu shot brand for small kids

August 5, 2010 By MIKE STOBBE , AP Medical Writer

(AP) -- A government panel is recommending doctors steer clear of giving one brand of flu vaccine to young children this year because of problems with it in Australia and New Zealand.

At issue is a flu shot made by CSL Biotherapies, an Australian company. There was an unexplained higher rate of fevers and seizures in children who got the vaccine this spring in those countries.

The Australian company is making vaccine for Americans this fall, but only a small portion of the 170 million doses.

On Thursday, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices said doctors should avoid using the Australian in children under 8, especially in those under 5.

U.S. officials say they have not seen similar problems with other vaccines.

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